2017 Nissan NV Passenger Review

NV Passenger

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2017 Nissan NV Passenger Overview

Since its 2012 debut, Nissan’s full-size NV Passenger van has become a fixture at airport curbsides and hotel-lobby entrances. It enters 2017 relatively unchanged, with seating for 12 across 4 rows and a choice of gasoline engines, but it remains saddled with a single wheelbase and standard roof height. The NV Passenger comes in the 1-ton 3500 weight category (unlike its NV Cargo sibling, which is also offered in the three-quarter-ton 2500) with rear-wheel drive (RWD), and it’s available in three trims—S, SV, and SL. Pricing for 2017 starts at $33,800 for the base S trim.

Sitting atop a highly modified version of the Nissan Titan F-Alpha platform, the NV Passenger provides a smooth and competent ride even when empty, and its handling characteristics are comparatively well balanced. Bear in mind, though, that the NV Passenger and most its competitors would benefit from an electronic wind-gust stability-control feature like that aboard the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter.

The NV Passenger S and SV trims come with a 4.0-liter V6 powerplant managed by a 5-speed automatic transmission to throw down 261 hp and 281 lb-ft of torque. Payload capacity maxes out at 2,820 pounds, and the van can tow up to 6,200 with the optional Class IV tow-hitch receiver. The top-of-the-lineup SL trim is outfitted with an updated 5.6-liter Endurance V8 mated to a 7-speed automatic to put out 375 hp and 387 lb-ft. Towing capacity jumps to 8,690 pounds, although maximum payload drops to 2,500 pounds. The SL comes with a tow hitch as standard equipment, as do the S and SV trims when equipped with the optional V8.

The NV Passenger van doesn’t offer much in the way of creature comforts, although the SL trim does come with leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a NissanConnect infotainment setup sporting a 5.8-inch touchscreen, smartphone connectivity, navigation, and satellite radio. A reversing camera comes standard with the SL trim and is far more useful than the auto-dimming rear-view mirror that’s also included. Fleet-tracking technology, which lets managers know where their vans are located, is an optional feature, and the lower trims offer most of the SL’s standard equipment as extra-cost add-ons.

An elongated hood provides a wealth of legroom for the NV Passenger’s comfortable front seats, while the dashboard gauges and controls are intuitive and within easy reach. This people-hauler also offers plenty of cabin stowage in numerous bins and nooks, including a nifty pull-out drawer beneath the driver’s seat. Second- and third-row seats are split 65/35 and can slide fore and aft for added legroom, while the stationary fourth row is split 50/50. All trims are equipped with a sliding passenger-side door. Luggage space behind the fourth row is a comparatively meager 18.9 cubic feet, but removing the rear seats expands this to 218.9 cubic feet. In comparison, the extended-length high-roof Ford Transit Wagon Van offers a total of 487 cubic feet of cargo room.

Standard safety equipment on the 2017 NV Passenger includes 4-wheel antilock disc brakes (ABS), traction and stability control, front side-mounted airbags, and head-curtain airbags for all rows. Daytime running lights are standard, while the SL trim receives fog lights and a remote antitheft alarm. Because of its relatively high stance, the 2017 NV Passenger earned a low score of just 2 stars for rollover protection, the only crash test performed, from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).


Have Laptop. Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.

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